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U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 469

Seabed Photographs, Sediment Texture Analyses, and Sun-illuminated Sea Floor Topography in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary Region off Boston, Massachusetts

By Page C. Valentine, Leslie B. Gallea, Dann S. Blackwood, and Erin R. Twomey


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The U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Sanctuary Program, conducted seabed mapping and related research in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary region from 1993 to 2004. The mapped area is approximately 3,700 km² (1,100 nmi²) in size and was subdivided into 18 quadrangles. An extensive series of sea-floor maps of the region based on multibeam sonar surveys has been published as paper maps and online in digital format (PDF, EPS, PS). In addition, 2,628 seabed-sediment samples were collected and analyzed and are in the usSEABED: Atlantic Coast Offshore Surficial Sediment Data Release. This report presents for viewing and downloading the more than 10,600 still seabed photographs that were acquired during the project. The digital images are provided in thumbnail, medium (1536 x 1024 pixels), and high (3071 x 2048) resolution. The images can be viewed by quadrangle on the U.S. Geological Survey Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center’s photograph database. Photograph metadata are embedded in each image in Exchangeable Image File Format and also provided in spreadsheet format. Published digital topographic maps and descriptive text for seabed features are included here for downloading and serve as context for the photographs. An interactive topographic map for each quadrangle shows locations of photograph stations, and each location is linked to the photograph database. This map also shows stations where seabed sediment was collected for texture analysis; the results of grain-size analysis and associated metadata are presented in spreadsheet format.

Posted July 2010

For additional information contact:
U.S. Geological Survey
Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center
384 Woods Hole Road
Quissett Campus
Woods Hole, MA 02543

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Valentine, P.C., Gallea, L.B., Blackwood, D.S., and Twomey, E.R., 2010, Seabed photographs, sediment texture analyses, and sun-illuminated sea floor topography in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary region off Boston, Massachusetts: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 469, available at



Seabed Photograph Collection and Processing

Seabed Sediment Collection, Processing, and Analysis

Quadrangle 1

Quadrangle 2

Quadrangle 3

Quadrangle 4

Quadrangle 5

Quadrangle 6

Quadrangle 7

Quadrangle 8

Quadrangle 9

Quadrangle 10

Quadrangle 11

Quadrangle 12

Quadrangle 13

Quadrangle 14

Quadrangle 15

Quadrangle 16

Quadrangle 17

Quadrangle 18

Description of Sea-Floor Topography and Geographic Names

Data Catalog

Selected References

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